Saturday, September 30, 2006

This week's track is the epitome of SOUL DISCO. Blood Hollins' "Don't Give it Up". Man, this one is a killer. Its 1976 and you had this great big sound, and it was soon to give way to a more European influence in disco, save for some exceptions. For an early twelve-inch, this single is surprisingly well-mixed and is packed with heat right to the end groove, brimming with a lush interplay of fanfare horns, scintillating strings, and even a grandiose harp. Its starts off as a solid, uplifting soul tune with an irresistible groove, and then it takes a turn that leads into an epic instrumental masterpiece- its foray is immense, and occurs just a mere two and a half minutes after the vocal part. The trumpet solos are jazz-inflected but very much grounded in funk and soul sensibility, and they weave in and out with the staccato of harps heralding that this record is one that takes you on a journey- much like Lamont Dozier's "Going Back to My Roots" or Billy Paul's "Going East". This could incinerate the floor, and I was fortunate to find my very own copy of this record before hype has really kicked in. Check it out for yourself...

Blood Hollins - Don't Give it Up

Thursday, September 28, 2006

It isn't a dead medium.... check this report on vinyl making a comeback.

And now, its time to herald the return of rollerdisco. What better time and place to bang out the boogie?

Here is the Press Release for AllSkate:

Skate to save a roller rink
City kids line up their vinyl for grand benefit to help save Chez Vous

Dorchester, MA --- September 20, 2006 --- It may be the music of the 80s that could save Boston's only roller rink from a fate fit for a bad 80s movie itself.

After 70 years serving the city with a place to roller skate, Chez Vous Roller Rink in Dorchester is facing tough financial times and could face closure if it can't get its head above water soon. But a group of local DJs and community organizers won't let that happen without a fight, and on Wednesday, October 18th, they are hosting a benefit at the rink to raise money and awareness for the threatened institution.

"ALL SKATE: A Night to Benefit Chez Vous" takes place from 8 pm to midnight on the 18th of October. It's hosted by DJs Joseph Colbourne, San Serac, Mark. E. Moon and Brendan Wesley spinning classic roller boogie and disco, electro funk and house to recreate a roller disco party of a new kind of scale. Proceeds from the event directly benefit the rink; tickets are $10, available this weekend onward at the rink, or via this contact, and $12 the night of the event. Skate rental is included free. Partygoers are invited to pursue their most creative roller skating outfitting ideas, and there is no age restriction on attendance. Chez Vous is located at 11 Rhoades St. in Dorchester, just at the corner of Rt. 203 and Blue Hill Ave. The rink area is serviced by the 28, 29, 21 and 31 bus routes on the MBTA.

Chez Vous has served the city since the 1930s, in its recent years hosting countless musical events as well as after-school programs for local kids. Now, it's time for the community to reach back and help preserve this city treasure. It's a place for neighborhood kids to enjoy a creative, athletic activity, as well as an outlet for some of the region's most stunning artistic skating for patrons of all ages, and we can't let it be forgotten.

Please refer to our myspace page for updates and a mini-mix by Colbourne at .

"ALL SKATE" is produced by Lindsay Crudele, a writer and fond roller skater, an entirely volunteer team of DJs, designers, sound technicians and printers, and in partnership with the Northeast Sticks Together festival.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Some would argue that it was...



And the reaction of the angry (afraid) American (or British) white man's threat to masculinity and alpha status...

...that lead to the stigma this still exists today. Perhaps these factors contributed even more so than the exploitation and distillation by the music industry at the time, creating a cash crop of rehashing, recycling, and retreading tired formulas for quick bucks and Billboard Hot 100 opportunities.

The Phoenix has risen.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Steve Fish, aka DJ Dynasty, was there when old school was new school. Originally from Brooklyn, and now residing in South Florida, he is primarily a bedroom DJ, save for the occasional party here and there. However, he has some solid disco and funk mixes with grooves from the likes of Fantasy, Patrick Cowley, Invisible Man's Band, First Choice, Telex, and Bruni Pagan, to name a few. He states, "I always find it as some sort of expression release that cant be replaced with anything else. I never forget where I come from & frequently get into some private sets of the stuff that I grew up on that keeps me in perspective knowing that thats where the challenge lies. To mix the perfectly timed drum machine based music of today is nice but spinning the late 70's and early 80s type of music helps keep me sharp in the mix." His site is definitely worth checking out:


This is yet another example of the legions of DJs, both those in bedrooms and in clubs far and wide, are keeping the spirit of this legendary sound burning bright.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Kat Mandu's "Super Lady" is my track of the week, and I gotta tell ya, I can't resist this one. Its got a groove, but its also playful, tongue-in-cheek, sexy, and has its own character- if it were a handsome feller rather than a record, I would say its quite a catch. It comes from the Manhattan Formula imprint (a division of Uniwave) which also brought us the ultra-rare boogie soul jam "Can't Sleep at Night" by Mike Dozier and, oddly enough, minimal-synth group Iko 83. It was produced by Michel Bibeau, whose other credits include Junior Byron's "Dance to the Music". This one is a keeper in my book, and I think you should give it a listen...

Kat Mandu - Super Lady

Friday, September 15, 2006

This week's featured mix comes courtesy of Million Dollar Disco and its by Andrew Morgan of District Wax Museum. This mix is bite-size (a mere 15 minutes), but well worth the listen, because this man has some raw, down and dirty, sick RARE DISCO records and I have no idea what tracks he uses in the mix. Tune in...

Ultra Mix '77

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Reading the crowd. One of the most underdeveloped skills of any aspiring DJ. When I started, I didn't exactly pay enough attention at the reaction of the crowd depending on what I programmed for a set. As a result, I would have a very inconsistent, very dissatisfied dancefloor of people milling about waiting for something that would hit them in that spot.

Room for deviation is something I found to be necessary. Crowd not feeling an electro, early house, techno, or italo vibe? Throw on some vocal, souful house, funk, or disco. Maybe thats what the particular crowd is craving. I gotta look at the crowd, I gotta communicate with crowd. Whats the sense in performing for others when you are the vehicle for the music you love? The crowd should be entertaining you as much as you are entertaining them. All these elements come into play, the element, the mood of the crowd, the nature of the venue, the sound system, the time of the night.

Along with reading the crowd, there is programming. The crowd DOES NOT always need accessiblity in the form of pop songs where they know all the hooks and words. "Never underestimate your audience" has become my personal mantra. WHAT you play may take you one step, but what REALLY counts once you choose what you play, is HOW you PLAY your music as a set. Programming. BPM and tempo, style of sound, composition (SO overlooked!), vocals, instrumentals, levels, quantized vs. non-quantized, the essence of two tracks and how they are juxtaposed. Should one play Slave's "Just a Touch of Love" directly after Berlin's "The Metro"? Will mixing out of a track in the vocal's mid-verse really work? Does that depend on whether it is quantized or raw?

I have found that there is much to consider....

...if you want to avoid an empty dancefloor.

Friday, September 08, 2006

An intoxicating slice of sultry soul is what we got this week in Blanche Carter's "Straight Down to the Bone"- which happens to be the namesake for my new show on Viva Radio. Man, this one is tasty, sexy, and its got a PROFOUND bass and Blanche's vocals are earnest yet also mischievous- just my type. Off the heralded TSOB label, which is known for their raw, dirty, no-BS grooves, this piece of goodness was written and produced by Richard Weeks of Weeks and Co. ("Rock Your World", "Go With the Flow") fame, and its subtly evident; while Weeks and Co. has the party jams, this is more of a late night/early morning groove. It sure is a crying shame that good ole Boston closed up at 2am. Shucks! Give this lovely one a listen:

Blanche Carter - Straight Down to the Bone

One More Note: I would like to receive feedback on file retrieval. Should I continue with You Send It or should I move on to Sendspace? Let me know here, or email me.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Recently, I've had the privilege becoming acquainted with Greg Wilson, prolific DJ and music writer, who had brought electro-funk to the UK and made it a hugely successful scene. I'd also like to point out that as I was beginning to explore and research as a budding DJ, Wilson's Essential Beats 82/83 (a list of 100 of the biggest tunes played at Legend in Manchester and Wigan Pier during 1982 and 1983) served as a one of my main reference points, and learned a lot of great tracks as a result. So I present him as a significant inspiration of mine.

This week, Mr. Wilson is not only my featured DJ but I also want to feature a number of his mixes:

MUSIC IS BETTER (mix #1106) at Deep House Page

In addition, there are live mixes:
FIRST TIME IN NYC: (mix #1302)

Greg Wilson also has a monthly online radio show, courtesy of

Lastly, here are a list of biographies on the man, including one from one of my favorite resource sites Jahsonic

Monday, September 04, 2006

Viva Radio is an internet radio station courtesy of American Apparel, which features disc jockeys offering up music of all genres and styles, and includes shows by my friends Dan Selzer and Rob Kelley. I am pleased to announce that I have been offered a show on Viva Radio, and I have named it "Straight Down to The Bone" (more on the origins of this name in my upcoming "Track of the Week" coming soon). I invite you to give it a listen:

Straight Down to The Bone RADIO SHOW

In other news, Ben Sisto has uploaded this week's Scenefeeder mix, named in celebration of my new radio show...

Listen to Straight Down to Tha Bone MIX

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Love During Wartime was a success. Not only was $1,000 raised towards a grant (which local artists and non-profits can apply for-more info on the myspace site), but it served as a veritable convention for fourteen local DJs to become acquainted, share, network, and make new friends. This was one of the highlights of the year for me, and it was great to see such DJs as Lone Wolf, and David Day perform, along with VJ Matt Boch. A special thanks to Ben Sisto for inviting me- your recognition of me as a DJ is something that I am really grateful for, as you helped me out at my very beginnings, with my first residency at Dynasty. I am honored to have been involved in this event, and it is an indication that the DJ culture of Boston in in fact, alive and well.